Victorian Powys for primary  schools
Powys Digital History Project
Hay and district
Victorian school days
  No boots, so no school !  

Many poor families in Victorian times had a real struggle to make enough money to stay alive. There were no benefits available then, apart from last resort of the workhouse for the most desperate, or very small sums from the parish.
Even the few pence to pay for children to go to the local school was too much for some parents, apart from finding suitable clothes to wear to school...

17th January
School diary entry

This was written in the Log Book of Llandeilo Graban School in 1898 -
7th January - "Attendance considerably improved this week, but the three boys Thomas, William, and Price Nicholls have been absent for 6 weeks, the excuse being "They have no boots fit to come to school in".
Boots were really important for country children, because many had to walk for miles over rough tracks to get to school. This entry in the school diary was from January, when the weather could be very bad and waterproof footwear was essential.
This was probably one of the more genuine excuses for not going to school - and there are plenty of excuses in the Victorian school records !

Ragged child

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